Newburgh Free Academy’s boys’ lacrosse team won four games in 2018, not a number that qualified them for the postseason.
But it was a small, solid step that can help a program that has endured many winless or lone victory seasons. And this season, Jimmy Horton, Newburgh’s coach, has 18 players returning with the fundamentals needed to play the game.
“Having that many guys who have played lacrosse before, should give us the opportunity to hopefully increase the amount of wins we get this season,” said Horton, entering his fourth season as head coach. “It’s the first time ever for me as a head coach where I am not having to teach stick skills for the first two weeks of the season.”
Terry Anderson, a senior, returns to play attack and midfielder with Aidan Connolly. Quran Adams, a sophomore, will be a midfielder and long-stick midfielder. Seniors Daquaun Cueto and Vincent Cassisi will play defense with Nick Patterson, a junior.
Senior Derek Iorlano will be the face-off guy, and Gabriel Yozzo, a senior and a Red Hook transfer, will be the goalie.
Newburgh’s future prospects also seem brighter. This is the first spring ever that modified and JV programs are in place to feed the varsity program. With those three teams, twice as many players are now involved in the program than ever before.
“That’s a big step in the right direction as far as what the program needs,” said Horton. “That alone should produce better results in the coming years.”
As the program tries to grow deeper roots, Horton said competing this season would be deemed a success. And winning more would surely help the varsity team retain any momentum.
“The goal is just to keep getting better,” he said. “Where we want to be and where we going to be are two different things.”